The latest trends in participant engagement and education

Wednesday, October 3, 2018 | By Alicia Hartjen

The latest trends in participant engagement and education

For many employees, financial concerns rank as the leading source of stress. It can cause employees to be less productive and miss work and also lead to health problems. PwC’s 2018 Employee Financial Wellness Survey reports nearly half of employees are stressed dealing with their financial situation and their stress is on the increase. 1

49% of Americans say they're concerned about their financial well beingBut there is a silver lining. Holistic tools and resources that offer comprehensive financial planning and connect to various life stages can play an important role in helping employees feel more financially secure. As a result, employers and plan sponsors are increasingly focusing on employees’ overall financial wellbeing by investing in online, interactive and multi-format content experiences.

Why a holistic approach is a win/win for all

Supporting employees’ financial wellness —beyond retirement planning is a natural extension for the retirement industry. Many employees already look to their plan sponsor for retirement guidance, and employers interested in adding financial wellbeing tools are increasingly looking to plan sponsors for support.

It’s also an effective way to help lower employees’ stress, while helping them achieve their personal financial objectives. It can also help boost the company’s bottom line. Financially capable employees are more likely to be engaged employees, which contributes to greater workplace productivity and retention for employers.2

Adopting a more holistic approach can also be a win/win for plan sponsors and plan providers. A holistic approach allows participants to focus on their overall financial wellbeing without sacrificing their retirement objectives. It can also engender greater participant loyalty and engagement with retirement planning, leading to increased plan assets and greater scale and lower administrative plan costs.

Creating a best in market solution: What to consider

To support employees’ financial wellbeing, companies will likely need to transform how they educate and engage with employees. Employees today expect the same user experience they have elsewhere in their lives. This requires plan sponsors and plan providers to deliver a more compelling, differentiated digital experience that reflects participants’ evolving customer expectations.

Firms looking to elevate their participant experience should consider enlisting external resources. Given today’s resource pressures and speed to market demands, teaming up with a solution provider can be more cost-effective. It also allows you to remain focused on your core business functions.    

What are some of the key features you should look for in a solution?

  • Easily integrates into your overall participant/investor communication solutions
  • Provides detailed metrics on the success of each participant interaction
  • Addresses different learning styles and preferred communication methods
  • Allows users to choose their own experience by the way they engage and interact
  • Offers customization capabilities such as adding your own content or content from your partners
  • Embraces social trends and leverages “gamification” to bring to life educational material in interactive and engaging ways for employees and participants

Financial wellness programs are fast becoming a business imperative for employers. So it’s not a surprise that demand for holistic financial tools is on the rise.

By investing in a holistic solution —one that includes a personalized digital experience, companies will continue to help their employees’ work toward a secure retirement. And in the process, they will also drive further benefits for employees and greater business value for their organizations.

To learn more about what’s fueling the trend in financial wellness programs and how elevating the participant experience is key, and to explore how a versatile platform, deep content and personalized digital tools can support your financial wellness initiatives, please contact Larry McQuaid at for a demo of SS&C’s Personalized Financial Wellness Center.


1 PwC, “Employee Financial Wellness Survey, 2018 results,” May 2018,

2 “Culture of Health and Financial Well-Being: Driving Business Value,” Willis Towers Watson, February 2014,


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